(Update: Victim identified, family statement, GoFundMe page)
BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) – A 14-year-old Bend High School freshman badly injured in an ATV rollover crash on the Fourth of July was on life support at St. Charles Bend Monday as his grief-stricken family arranges for his organs to be donated to those in need.
Deschutes County sheriff's deputies said Donovan Williams was not wearing a helmet or seat belt when the side-by-side ATV he was driving rolled, throwing him and one of two passengers as they rode on public land in the Alfalfa area, east of Bend, around 2 p.m. on Saturday.
Williams was a student at High Desert Middle School and was heading into his freshman year at Bend High School.
His mother, Becky Williams, told NewsChannel 21 that her son was a star athlete who just began football practice and conditioning with the Lava Bears. He also sang with the High Desert Middle School Jazz Band.
"Donovan will never regain consciousness or be able to breathe again," she said in a statement. "And because of this, we have decided to donate his organs so that others will have another chance at life, whereas he cannot."
Friends commenting on a GoFundMe page set up to assist the family are expressing sorrow and prayers for the family. The page has already raised more than double the initial goal of $10,000.
In a statement on the page, Becky Williams said, "Words cannot express the absolute devastating pain we are going through.
"Donovan Williams was a amazing kid. This proves he touched so many people. I do want to let you know, Donovan has not yet passed. He is being looked at very closely to make positive that there is no brain function left.
"His injuries are likely fatal. Because he is so young, the awesome hospital staff is doing EVERYTHING they can to make sure our decisions about transplant are educated.
"Please hold us in your prayers. Thank you all so much for this help. Mark and Aria are amazing friends. Kiss your loved ones, tell them you love them extra. You have no idea what tomorrow holds," she concluded.
Earlier story info:
Deputies were dispatched shortly before 2 p.m. Saturday to assist Bend Fire medics following the crash of the Yamaha Rhino, a popular UTV (utility terrain vehicle) off-road vehicle, near the intersection of Deer Lane and Fremont Road, Sgt. Jason Wall said.
Deputies learned three boys ages 13 to 15, were riding the ATV on public land west of the intersection when it overturned for unknown reasons, throwing the driver and one passenger, Wall said.
The teens were not wearing helmets at the time, he said, and the driver and front passenger were not using the installed seatbelts. A second passenger, who was wearing a seat belt, was not ejected, he added.
A fourth boy riding with other juveniles in another ATV not involved in the crash quickly contacted an adult family member at a nearby home, Wall said. The adult contacted 911 dispatchers and began to render aid to the injured driver.
The passengers were not injured, but the driver suffered life-threatening injuries, Wall said.
Due to the severity of the injury and distance to the hospital, an Air Link helicopter was called in and a landing zone was set up on Raven Lane for the air ambulance to bring the teen to St. Charles Bend.
Family members brought the two passengers to the hospital.